5 Steps for Building a Brand Awareness Strategy with Great ROI
To be successful in business, you must have a strong brand. Businesses that have a strong, concise brand identity are better able to do things like build loyalty amongst existing customers, stand out from the competition, convey a clear brand message, and most important – influence the buying decisions of their customers.
These are just some of the many reasons why it’s crucial that you generate brand awareness around your business. But how do you go about building a strategy to generate awareness if you aren’t in tune with what your brand identity is?
What Exactly is Brand Identity?
Essentially, your brand identity can be defined as the apogee of all your marketing elements. This includes your brand’s tone of voice, logo, colors, tagline or slogan, and even social media posts. Oh, and don’t forget about your website.
Through a narrow lens, these individual elements are seen as marketing activities. However, when viewed collectively, they help in producing a strategic toolkit that defines your company; not only to yourself but to your employees, your customers, and all other outside parties. Try and think of what your company looks like from a customer’s perspective. This practice can help you shape a clear and direct brand identity that is easily recognizable to the general public.
If a brand is lacking in both recognition and consistency, it’s important to take the time to reevaluate and nail down what it is that your brand is about, and how it wants to communicate that message.
5 Steps for Building a Brand Awareness Strategy
Let’s discuss 5 steps that will help any company build an effective brand awareness strategy. These tips will guide brands and marketers alike in generating the ROI they are searching for with their brand marketing efforts.
1. Identify Your Target Customers
As is the case with just about any marketing campaign, should always start with developing and understanding your target audience – no matter the campaign objective.
This ideology also applies to brand awareness campaigns. The desire to have more people know and recognize your brand will not be fulfilled by aimlessly trying to reach everyone. In 2020, that would honestly be a complete waste of both time and money. These days, it’s imperative that you have a target audience in mind before you even begin creating marketing content. How do you know what type of marketing initiatives will be most effective if you don’t know who you are targeting?
You must first define your target audience by demographics, online behavior, interests, etc, and then create marketing content aimed at reaching those people. This can first be done by studying the data behind your current customers and social media followers. Most of the large platforms like Facebook and Instagram provide some form of analytics that can help you gain an initial understanding of who your audience is on social media.
Additionally, website analytics from tools like SEMrush and Google Analytics is a great way to learn more about your current website visitors. Once you have an understanding of who your current audience is – and their behaviors – you can start creating a campaign directly aimed at targetting more of the people who fit your customer personas.
2. Leverage your Social Media Presence
These days, just about everyone is on social media. This means that your current and future customers are all browsing feeds on social media platforms and sharing details about their activities. You can learn a lot about someone’s likes, dislikes, experiences, and even their purchases through their social media accounts. If your business already has a social media presence, you’re ahead of the game. In this instance, when a customer posts about something they purchased from your company, they may be gracious enough to include a link to your business or tag you in their post for their followers to find you on your social media accounts.
This engagement is beneficial beyond just growing your social audience. You can use it to your advantage by leaning into the process. Social media marketing gives you the prime opportunity to engage in conversations with customers (and potential customers) in an authentic fashion that helps them see your business in a different light. They view your company more as a living thing than simply an impersonal entity. This is essential when creating any sort of brand; business or otherwise.
We only do marketing that works.
3. Utilize User-Generated Content
Looking for an amazing ROI on your marketing content? Look no further than UGC!
User-generated content, or UGC, is one of the most effective content types you deploy to help build a strong brand image. UGC is considered more authentic because, well, it is. It’s users sending you content that you can re-amalgamate into powerful pieces of marketing content that endear you to your audience and provides social proof to consumers on social media.
The idea behind UGC is rather simple. It’s built on the notion that the more customers talk well about your brand, the more popular your brand gets in return. Viral Nation’s co-founder Joe Gagliese has said it many times, that ‘influencer marketing is word of mouth on steroids’. Well, UGC falls into a similar category in terms of its word-of-mouth effect on potential consumers.
To properly employ this tactic, you must first find a way to incentivize your customers to create content for your brand. One popular way to go about this is to have them showcase the brand’s products in use, and tag the company in the social post. In return, a brand may feature some of these user posts on their official social media page, or offer giveaways for top-rated entrants. In some ways, it could even be viewed as an entry of sorts to a contest. And the wonderful content the promotion produces is the cherry on top.
4. Have Your Brand Do Giveaways
When it comes to getting the most bang for your buck in terms of ROI for your marketing spend, the last thing you probably think about is doing a giveaway. But they offer more value than many brands give them credit for. Producing and giving out inexpensive branded gifts provides something useful to both your existing or potential customers. And when it comes to brand awareness, it’s one of the best vehicles for getting your name out there. Finding a way to get those items into customers’ homes exposes your brand name to everyone who’s eyes come across it.
For the purpose of building brand awareness, your giveaways can be just about anything. Items can be as simple as pens, keychains, or small notepads of sticky notes. This is a simple yet effective way to get your brand name and image out there and increase recognition and awareness. But to be even more effective, you can get a little bit creative.
For example, let’s say you are the owner of an up-and-coming craft brewery. Instead of taking the conventional “S.W.A.G.” route (“something we all get”), you can give away a cool bottle opener with your brand logo on it. Or even better, have it designed to be shaped like your brand mascot (if you have one). Just make sure that whatever you choose to give away is of a certain level of quality that will be appreciated by potential consumers and worthy of the investment. Don’t let gesture with little thought, poor quality, or minimal usefulness reflect poorly on your or your brand.
5. Activate an Influencer Marketing Campaign!
It goes without saying that influencer marketing has taken the digital marketing world by storm over the past few years. So it should come as no surprise that one of the best ways to increase brand awareness in 2020 is to collaborate with influencers. When brands contract an influencer to create sponsored content, influencers post about the brand on social media, where their huge audience and massive amounts of followers can see it. This is the primary way in which you can reach their audience and promote your brand for the world to see.
Influencers usually have loyal followers who trust the influencer. And, if an influencer recommends your brand, chances are that their followers will at least check it out if not make a purchase. Therefore, if your goal is to increase brand awareness, then influencer marketing should definitely be a part of your marketing strategy.